Brey Logs 100th Win in Victory Over Hoyas

On January 23, the Notre Dame basketball team lost a heartbreaker, 55-54, to Georgetown as time expired. The Irish avenged that loss on Wednesday night as the Irish defeated the Hoyas, 70-64, before 11,418 fired-up fans. The win moves Notre Dame to 15-7 overall and 7-5 in the BIG EAST. Georgetown goes to 16-7 and 8-4 in the conference.

The Irish smothered the Hoyas in the first half with outstanding defense, which held Georgetown to just 17 points and 31.6 percent from the floor. The hustling defensive play also caused 11 turnovers which resulted in 11 points for the Irish.

The Irish overall shooting percentage in the first half was only 33.3 percent, but they were able to knock down 6-of-11 from beyond the arc, and they were also deadly from the free throw line dropping in 8-of-9 attempts.

Both teams started off slowly on offense and the Irish trailed 8-9 with 12.33 to go in the half, but senior Jordan Cornette quickly hit a 3-pointer to give the Irish an 11-9 lead. From this point on the visitors were outscored 19-8 and went into the locker room trailing 30-17.

Senior Chris Quinn led the Irish scoring in the first half with 13 as he was 3-of-3 from 3-point range and 4-of-5 from the charity stripe. Jordan Cornette was next in scoring with six points. Senior Chris Thomas only had three points in the half but was very effective in running the offense.

The second half saw the visitors come out aggressively and cut the Irish lead to six at the 10:26 mark. However, the home team was not about to fold and kept a double digit lead most of the remaining time and the closest the Hoyas could get was 69-64 with 00:08 to go.

The Irish had four players in double figures. Thomas led the way with 21, followed by Quinn with 18, Colin Falls added 13, and Torin Francis chipped in 11 for the win.

Although the Irish were only 17-of-43 for 39.5 percent from the field, they did hit on 10-of-20 from 3-point range and they continued to be successful from the foul line hitting on 26-of-29 which made the difference in the game.

Irish coach Mike Brey was pleased with the defensive play in the first half.

"I thought our first half defense really set the tone," Brey said. "It set the tone for the whole game and gave us a cushion that we were able to hold them off. You knew they were going to make a little bit of a run. I thought we also defended the 3-point line pretty good. We did not really let them use that as a weapon, and it has been a weapon for them."

The Irish coach was also pleased with the play of his two guards, Quinn and Thomas on the evening.

"I thought Chris and Chris really managed the game on the offensive end because you aren't going to have that many possessions," he said. "You can't come down and let it fly real quick because you know you are going to have to guard for 25 seconds again. I thought both of them did a pretty good job. Chris Thomas especially, since it's in his hands mostly, and just knowing when to be patient and slow it down a little bit."

Wednesday's win marked the 100th wn for Brey as coach for Notre Dame.

"I can't believe I've been here that long," he stated. "I thank Dr. White for coming and getting me out of Delaware five years ago. I was thinking today because we won 99 at Delaware and 100 here, and I have had really good players. When I got here I inherited a good group, and there was a little bit of juice, and I think we added something. I've had really good assistants. I've had a great staff. And here I've had really good guards including (Martin) Ingelsby."

Senior guard Chris Thomas was also happy to avenge their close loss to Georgetown.

"It was a big win for us and good for our RPI," Thomas said. "We were riding our defense. They only had 17 points at the half so we were pleased with that. But we come back tomorrow and we have to prepare for another hard road trip." >{?

Torin Francis said tonight's win was, "Big, very big. It was a really big win especially after coming off a loss. We know that each and every one of our games the rest of the season is critical. This game tonight was critical and to win it was a big win. It strengthens our resume as Georgetown is ranked higher than us in the Big East. So when you beat a team that is ranked higher than you, it is always good."

The Irish will next travel to Providence this Saturday to take on the Friars at 12:00 pm. Top Stories